Trainee doctors are on a warpath in government medical colleges. They complain that they are made to do the job of nursing and technical staff thus preventing the interns from learning to treat patients.

“We administer injections, check the vitals and administer IV fluids but the nurses enter the details in their logbook as if they have done the job,” an intern at Madras Medical College said.

Several trainee doctors from Stanley and Kilpauk Medical College Hospitals also complained of similar situations.

The interns, who are on compulsory rotational residential internship for a year before they graduate as doctors, had been wearing black badges for several days this week. Having completed four months of internship, they say it is a matter of poor administration in hospitals and that it should be addressed by the deans of the college.

On Saturday, the interns formed human chains in their respective institutions complaining that they were denied their weekly off.

The doctors who must do a year of internship – compulsory rotational residential internship – said they were forced to work for more than 36 hours at a stretch in the name of ‘admission day’ every week.

“In some departments, interns are made to put in three 36-hour shifts in a single week, sometimes even back-to-back. Interns work continuously with little or no sleep, food and rest,” said a release from the Tamil Nadu Medical Colleges Interns Association.

The association has demanded the immediate implementation of 12-hour shift systems to ensure interns get adequate hours of rest every day.

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